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Messages - WesternFlyer

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1
General Discussion / Re: Long distance trip alone?
« on: March 14, 2012, 07:08:53 pm »
The extra information changes it quite a bit.

Your conclusions are rational, logical and well stated.  Please allow that for a few of us life does not appear entirely rational and logical, especially in emergencies.  So perhaps you can wear your stainless steel amulet draped around your neck and I my polyurethane talisman clasped to my wrist and we can both ride with some degree of providential protection. 

Western Flyer

2
General Discussion / Re: Long distance trip alone?
« on: March 12, 2012, 01:30:27 pm »
Russ

It did happen as I wrote, but not exactly as you have assumed.  I was not picked up unconscious on the street by EMTs.  I was driven conscious to the hospital by my daughter.  The ER had access to all my medical records without accessing my medic tag.  I suppose this bit of information proves your point to you, but just a certainly it proves my point to me.  Just doing a quick search I noticed American Medical ID now offers bright colorful wristbands quite similar in style and function to the Road ID.

http://www.americanmedical-id.com/marketplace/category_viewall.php?bbmetalgroup=&filter_price=&scrollcat=brac_siliconeflex&mastercategory=bracelets

May we all be safe on the road.

Western Flyer

3
General Discussion / Re: Long distance trip alone?
« on: March 10, 2012, 10:53:01 pm »
My point about the metal bead chain was that it is cut resistant where a dog tag on a piece of string would not be.  I do know of a rider hurt in a bike crash whose dog tag was on a ribbon around her neck and was lost when the EMTs cut off her jersey to treat a shoulder injury so they never saw it.


I have a little true story to relate that relates to long distance solo riding and most any other of life’s activities.  Last year I made a trip to the ER related to a chronic heart problem (not bike related). After four hours of tests and being stripped down to a flimsy hospital gown I was wheeled into MRI room.  Of course I was asked if I was wearing any metal.  I pulled out my medic alert tag on its stainless steel chain.  The charge nurse turned a ghostly shade of pale.  I had been wearing this tag around my neck day and night for over ten years just for this day and it failed.

When I was discharged and got home, I decided at this point in my life it was appropriate to wear my heart on my sleeve.  I ordered a bright red Road ID wristband and have worn it every day since both on and off the road.

And I pretty much ride exclusively solo, often in remote places, up to six weeks at a time and love it.

Western Flyer



4
Pacific Northwest / Re: Klamath Falls to Yreka advice requested
« on: March 09, 2012, 05:40:45 pm »
I traveled on the Topsy Road following the Klamath River.  There was a very short section on I-5.  Mind you the Topsy is not for the faint of heart or tires.  http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/page/?o=2e&page_id=102277&v=J6

Western Flyer

5
General Discussion / Re: Flat Tire - Safety Alert
« on: February 18, 2009, 02:08:19 am »
In my garage I use what in a biology class would be called a “teasing needle,” but I get them from an art supply store where they are sold as a “needle tool.”  It is basically a pencil sized piece of wood with a needle sticking out at one end, they're cheap.  I mount my bike on the work stand and slowly spin each wheel slowly in each direction dragging the side of the needle over the tire.  It has a very sensitive feel for any protruding object even very small hard to see ones.  When I see a cut in the tire I probe it with the end of the needle feeling for glass chards and other sharp debris hidden below the surface.  I have found it can take days and even weeks for glass to cut its way through the Kevlar protective layer most quality bike tires have.  I do this once a week when I am riding around town preemptively, not waiting for the flat to take place.  When I am touring I do the same check everyday except I use a small pen knife or a sewing needle to search and probe.

When I come to a fine metal punctures that I can't remove with the needle tool I try needle nose pliers or strong tweezers.  Some times it helps to let most but not all of the air out and pinch the sidewall beside the puncture.  When that fails I remove the tire from the rim.  Sometimes it is protruding enough on the inside to pull through.  Sometimes I use the needle tool and push the wire or metal fragment completely through to the other side. 

When I do get a flat I go through the same procedures with both tires and I do the above check before I take the flat tire off the rim.  If you picked up a piece of glass in one tire there is a good chance you got one in the other.  I use foldable tires and I turn the flat tire inside out and do the same test on the inside when it is off the rim.  Last weekend I came back from a city ride and pulled a total of four pieces of glass out of my tires even though I didn't have any flats.

I certainly agree in safety first.  If an object is sharp enough to cut or puncture the tough rubber of a touring tire it can easily cut your fingers and who knows where it has been.

6
General Discussion / Re: panniers and a trailer
« on: February 15, 2009, 03:41:36 pm »
Try Ebay they often have good deal on Axiom panniers.  One of the pluses for Axiom is easy to find replacement parts.

7
Gear Talk / Re: new crankset
« on: February 12, 2009, 07:49:41 pm »
I have a Sugino crank.  The OME FD was a Shimano 105 and with 12,000 K on it everything is fine.  The OME CRs were 48-38-28.  I replaced them with Race Face 46-34-24 and they shift even better.

8
Gear Talk / Re: big, wide feet need touring shoes
« on: February 11, 2009, 12:28:57 am »
Try the Cannondale Roam.  Nashbar has them on sale for $45.  They are built on a wider last than other SPD shoes I have used.  I got mine at REI two years and have maybe 5000 to 6000 K on them.  They are still in reasonable shape, but I might replace them soon.  I don't know if other Cannondale shoes are equally wide.

9
Routes / Re: Southern Tier & Fuel for cooking advice please
« on: February 09, 2009, 12:14:28 pm »
Here is a windscreen that can be modified to fit most any stove system.  It is half the price of the name brand screens and folds up flat.  I used a simple paper punch to put a line of vent holes near the bottom.  I just added holes until it was right. 
http://www.campsaver.com/ItemMatrix.asp?GroupCode=trd0002&MatrixType=1


10
General Discussion / Re: Pacific Coast Starting mid March
« on: February 05, 2009, 02:07:30 pm »
The old saying “March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb” often seems to hold in the Pacific Northwest, but not always.  That is the very fiercest of the winter storms tend to be over by mid March, but not the rain.  I have sea kayaked in Washington and British Columbia in late March many times and had gorgeous weather more often than not.  I would love to read a journal of someone who did a late winter/early spring ride on the PCBR, while warming myself by my fireplace.  Good luck and be prepared for the worst, but enjoy the green and verdant spring as you ride south or perhaps riding north might be the better direction that time of year.

11
Gear Talk / Re: bike security
« on: January 30, 2009, 12:23:36 pm »
 popular kryptonite U lock being picked in just seconds with a ink pen. U lock owners beware....


I thought Kryptonite recalled all their cylinder keyed U locks years ago.  On tour I use a thin 6 ft long cable and a very light combo lock.  I carried a 3 lb combination U lock for four weeks on last summer's tour and never used it once.  I used the little lock mostly to keep the raccoons out of the food lockers at the hike & bikes.

12
Routes / Re: Southern Tier & Fuel for cooking advice please
« on: January 29, 2009, 04:29:05 pm »
Tony

Getting a “real cup of tea” may be your biggest problem.  When you order a cup of “Southern Sweet Tea” hold onto you chair!

I have heard that Great Britain is even stricter than the US on allowing liquid fuel camp stoves on airplanes.  If there is even a trace of fuel residue, they will not allow it, and at least in the US they do test.  The only exception I have heard of are alcohol/spirit stoves like the Swedish Trangia, where the alcohol is easily washed out with water.  I haven’t heard or read anything, but I would think pressurized canister stoves less the canister would be allowed.

Denatured ethanol (I think it is called mentholated spirits on your side of the Atlantic.)  is readily available at any hardware or paint supply store even in small towns. In a pinch you an use Yellow HEET, which is available at gas/petrol stations. Don't use Red HEET.  It leaves black soot on your pots.   Fuel canisters vary a lot, but they last a long time and should be available in both the bigger cities and in areas that cater to a lot of campers. 

Western Flyer

13
General Discussion / Re: Winter Pacific Coast tour
« on: January 20, 2009, 03:03:33 am »
If you are ready for some high adventure go for it.  You will need a four season tent that can handle some real wind.  Storms with gusts in excess of 100 mph come in once or twice a year on the Oregon coast.  A good credit card that can handle a few days hold up in a motel is probably mandatory too.  You will need real rain gear that you will be comfortable in all day long day after day.  You will be sharing the state parks with the surfers and seals (a nice lot).  Some the Oregon state parks have yurts with heaters.  I think even in the winter they need to be reserved in advance (check online).

I have been stuck on islands in Washington and Canada with my kayak this time of year.  As long as I have a good fire and good food it has been great.

14
General Discussion / Re: Maui???
« on: January 17, 2009, 12:34:37 am »
In  February you are in real risk of rain—lots of rain, deluge, downpours with the real possibility of lovely sunny days, dress accordingly.  Hawaii is subtropical and gets the same storms that hit the West Coast of the Mainland US only a lot warmer.  Mid-April offers a much better chance of good weather..

Get a good map (Nelles Maps are good.) and look for roads that have warnings about driving rental cars on.  These roads can offer excellent biking.  The classic ride is the narrow road on the northeast side leading to Hana.  My wife and I road there many years (decades) ago and camped at Seven Sacred Pools.  The Pools are now part of the National Park.  Beyond the park, the road becomes a rough 4x4 dirt road that circles back to tourist beaches on the south central part of Maui.  Looking at the Haleakala NP site http://www.nps.gov/hale/ it looks like some of that road, but not all, is now paved.  The south side is the dry side of the island.

Aloha,

Western Flyer

15
General Discussion / Re: How do you like the new forum?
« on: January 11, 2009, 06:13:56 pm »
It seems to be exactly the same as the previous forum.  How is it any different?  The light blue text is slightly harder to read and it takes a little longer to log on to post a message. ::)

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